It has truly been a joyous season. December birding for me has included several sightings for the record books. It all began on December 2 with the local sightings of Black-crowned Night Heron and a Selasphorus sp. hummer that has since been confirmed as a Rufous.
Less than a week later, my friend Marvin and I discovered my highlight for the month, a Northern Shrike. Despite several attempts to relocate the bird in the following days, it remained undetected until Charley Burwick managed to spot the bird on December 22. Again, all follow up attempts to find the bird have been futile since the second sighting.
Ron Thompson called early in the month to report a visiting Baltimore Oriole. The fate of the bird remains unknown as Ron left the area for HIS wintering grounds, inspite of the fact that the Oriole's internal mechanism to leave for its wintering grounds is apparently malfunctioning.
On the 22nd of December, my son from North Carolina arrived with a few target species in mind. Less than an hour after his arrival, Charley called with his report of the Northern Shrike, so we high tailed it to Fellow's Lake just as dramatic weather changes took place. Needless to say, we were unsuccessful in our attempt to find the shrike, but stopped by Nixon Farm to see the Short-eared Owls that have been hanging out there this month.
More of N8's and my outings on the next post.